Jani Antikainen is a serial entrepreneur, a venture capitalist, and a researcher at Jyväskylä University in Finland. His latest start-up, Sparta, focuses on protecting organisations’ critical information assets from malicious manipulation. His academic research concentrates on identifying and countering information manipulation. Combining both academia and practical views, Antikainen develops comprehensive and powerful means for protecting both public and private sectors’ information assets. He is finalizing his dissertation in Economics and holds earlier M.Sc. in Economics and M.Sc. in Technology.
PRESENTATION: Information Manipulation and Its Vast Negative Potential in Cybercrime and Cyberspace in General
Information (data) manipulation is a less known type of cyberattack, in which the perpetrator makes changes to target’s information assets, compromising the integrity and trustworthiness of those instead of stealing the information (confidentiality) or denying access to it (availability). In most cases, changes are subtle and masked as “normal activity” of the operator. Executed over a longer period of time, they can be hard or next to impossible to identify and track. This can lead to a situation that the target can not anymore tell, which part of its information assets it can trust and which not.
The trend of these attacks is emerging and the fatal potential of the attack type has been recognized by the very top guys of the US intelligence community (Clapper, Rogers, Comey). Latest 9th May Rogers made a comment in Senate hearing/testimony that worst case cyber attack scenario would include “data manipulation on a massive scale”. This and former comments require attention and the first step is to acknowledge information/data manipulation as a phenomenon of vast negative potential and investigate, what the concept is all about and what remedies and hardening plus resiliency is available or how to make such available.
There are already major information manipulation attacks made globally, resulting in several billion of stolen dollars from the banking sector, electoral frauds and cases, like in which one manufacturing industry competitor has sabotaged another manufacturer’s product data leading into multi-billion losses as defective products getting distributed and getting later called back. With countries like Russia and China strongly acknowledging deception and misinformation also as parts of their military doctrines, we are wise to expect more to follow, not to mention the pure financial cybercrime potential information manipulation holds. It is time to open the eyes.